HOLT's HIDDEN HISTORY - ORDER FORM & BACKGROUND
Holt's Hidden History
Following 18 months of research, funded by Northern Marches Cymru, Holt Local History Society published Holt's Hidden History in November 2013 to record and interpret the archaeological methods and processes. The local community have been heavily involved and over 1000 books distributed to all homes in Holt and the surrounding area, free of charge.
Copies will also be made available for purchase in February 2013. If you would like a copy please contact B Payne.
What did the project consist of ?
1. Trial excavations and evaluation garden test pits. These were carried out on ten volunteered Holt gardens, over the weekend 13th & 14th July 2013. See pages 46-52 of the book, Holt’s Hidden History.
2. Searching for historic river crossings and connected land routes.
Magnetometry was carried out south of Holt bridge in two fields on the east bank of the river and on three gardens on the west bank, plus fields north west of Holt bridge. This was followed by a trial excavation on one of the fields on the east of the River Dee. See pages 37-40 of the book, Holt’s Hidden History.
3. Researching previous communities in Holt and how they used these routes.
Sites within Croxton’s field, Spencer’s acre and other fields on the River Dee were surveyed using magnetometry and some limited resistivity. In 2013 both Croxton’s and Brick Kiln Bank field were subject to trial excavations with both yielding finds relating to potential occupation, industry and routes (paths, trackways etc). See pages 27-36 and 42-44 of the book, Holt’s Hidden History.
4. Holt’s Fishponds are on the south side of Borras road and were reviewed as part of the project with the assistance of Professor Stewart Ainsworth. The fishponds were determined to cover a larger area than currently shown on OS maps and constructed in two phases. See pages 44-45 of the book, Holt’s Hidden History.
5. The information panel on the village Cross has been replaced and is now bilingual.
6. Village event.
Lectures and exhibitions were held on three occasions during the project to explain to, and involve the community of Holt.
On September 28th 2013, a further village event was held to celebrate and inform the community of the project's methodology and outcomes. This was achieved by:
(i) having a live archaeological dive in the River Dee by Chester sub aqua club;
(ii) digging live trenches in Holly House field with the aid of the Caer Alyn team, led by Phil Cox – the public also took part using the equipment provided;
(iii) having live magnetometry demonstrations in the same field – courtesy of Wirral Archaeology;
(iv) display of all the projects aspects in the Kenyon Hall;
(v) Involvement of the local primary school and under 5’s group through class discussions, medieval fancy dress and construction of coats of arms, shields and swords;
(vi) Wrexham Heritage Services arranged for a medieval re-enactment by Les Milles de Marches on Church Green that was a strong crowd puller.
See pages 56-61 of the book, Holt’s Hidden History.
HLHS produced and printed this 80 page book ‘Holt’s Hidden History' covering every aspect of the project and the community’s involvement. One thousand copies have been printed and circulated free of charge to all participants and homes in Holt and surrounding area. This book has also been translated into Welsh and is now on this web site.
We believe this project has added to the interpretation of Holt’s history and has prioritised many pointers for others to follow. It has also celebrated the heritage features as described above, with the Holt community and visitors to the September 28th event being better informed of Holt’s history. The primary school has also included local history as a new element of their syllabus.